Playbill "Woman is the Nigger of the world," said John Lennon, not so long ago. But during these past few years, women have demanded, with good reason, that men take a new look at them--and they have. During this reassessment, men haven't just stepped back to the side lines to gawk at the girls. They've been changing, assimilating, evolving--perhaps even questioning. What men haven't really done so far is to assert this, to let people know they're still on the field. Women ask them through clenched teeth, "How would you like to be a sex object?" The men shuffle, look at their shoes. . . . Maybe it's time for them to admit that they might like it fine, just fine. In this context--and also because it's about time somebody took an interest in where men are, what they're doing and where they're going--we set out to create You've Come a Long Way, Buster, a man-sized project coordinated by Staff Writer David Standish and Assistant Art Director Alfred Zelcer.
Playboy, September, 1974, volume 21, number 9. Published monthly by Playboy. Playboy building, 919 North Michigan avenue, chicago, illinois 60611, Subscriptions: in the United States, its possessions and Canada, $24 for three years, $18 for two years, $10 for one year. Elsewhere $15 per year. allow 30 days for new subscriptions and renewals, change of address: send both old and new addresses to Playboy. Playboy building, 919 North Michigan avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60611. And allow 30 days for change. Marketing: Richards. Rosenzweig. Director of marketing: Emery Smyth, Marketing services director; Nelson Futch, Marketing manager; Lee Gottlieb, Director of public relations. Advertising: Howard W. Lederer, Advertising director; Herbert D. Maneloveg, associate advertising director; Jules Kase, Joseph Guenther, associate advertising managers, 747 third avenue, New York. New York 10017; Chicago, Sherman Keats, Manager, 919 North Michigan Avenue; Detroit, William F. Moore, Manager, 818 fisher building; Los Angeles, Stanley L, Perkins, Manager, 8721 Beverly Boulevard; San Francisco. Robert E. Stephens, Manager, 417 Montgomery Street: Southeastern Representative. Pirnie E. Brown, 2100 Piedmont Road N. E., Atlanta, Georgia 30305.
Cassandra, eat your heart out: Jeane Dixon, who writes a syndicated horoscope column, had this remarkable admonition for those born under the sign of Taurus, as published in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram: "Wind up your work week as early as possible. Personal concerns arise which take extra time, with indication of satisfaction in the dong."
If a yellow chicken feather should happen to drift lazily onto the untroubled surface of your Buffalo Bill, where would you be? Undoubtedly, at Nickels, a new Manhattan steakhouse located at 227 East 67th Street, and you would be drinking their lethal version of a boilermaker, perhaps named in honor of the one buffalo nickel that can be found three quarters of the way down the bar, embedded there along with some 10,000 other nickels. Where did the chicken feather come from? Well, the Muppets have their headquarters upstairs in the robber-baron-baroque carriage house that houses Nickels on its first floor, and one of Big Bird's feathers must have floated downstairs--or is that the old chicken himself drinking in the corner booth? Less fanciful is the decor of Nickels: brown. Brown wood paneling, brown wood-beamed ceiling, brown floor tiles and smoky mirrors with bronze highlights. Even the cover of Nickels' menu is brown, and so is the type describing all their permutations and combinations on the theme of steak. Nickels' broiler is hot enough to turn out a black-and-blue sirloin to suit the finickiest steak fancier; charcoal black and crusty on the outside and still blue on the inside. Nickels' meat is the rich, marbled stuff that you have to get to the meat market at four a.m. to buy. There is also a special of the day, sometimes a crisp, crackly duck à l'orange or a chicken cordon bleu, and a particularly zesty bouillabaisse heads the fish department on the menu. All of these favorites are in harmony with an extraordinary side dish known as Nickels Potatoes. Almost the size of your mother's leaden potato pancakes, they are light and fluffy patties of riced potato, chopped prosciutto ham and Italian parsley. Rolled in blanched almond flakes and parmesan cheese, then breaded and sautéed in butter, they make French fries taste like . . . French fries. Nickels Special Salad is a combination of avocado, asparagus spears, cherry tomatoes and Bibb and romaine lettuce. The secret ingredients in the delicious dressing are grated scallion tops, carrots and celery. These unexpected vegetable flavors in no way play hob with the other salad ingredients; in fact, their own natural flavors are enhanced. Nickels' waiters are fleet of foot and eager to please. If it's your birthday, you can be sure they'll get your name right. None of that "Happy birthday, dear Garble" stuff. Prices are appropriately nickel and dime (well, almost) to double eagle and all major credit cards except Mobil and Exxon are accepted. Nickels is open seven nights a week from 4 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. and reservations are suggested (212-794-2331). A word of warning: If you should see Bert and Ernie chugging Buffalo Bills and prying loose the nickels embedded in the bar, don't stop on the way out and tell them how great they are on Sesame Street. They're probably looking for a group scene.
If you have had Watergate to the gills and are ready to turn to drink the next time some fatuous television announcer mentions "the crucial March 21st conversation," take heart. There is a silver lining to the whole thing. It's not anything like learning from past mistakes and strengthening our constitutional safeguards. We might learn from history every now and then, but we inevitably misapply the lesson. No, my silver lining has more to do with aesthetics. With poise and moderation in the world.
The book business in midsummer isn't exactly hot lunch. Everybody is waiting around for the release of the new fall line ("I'd like something in a Vonnegut, please: not too long") and, in the meantime, pickings are slim. So we spent the time mostly reading comic books. And found out that, even there, the world is not the same. In the good old days, Superman used to march around smashing anti-American villains and holding off Lois Lane, who went into heat whenever she saw him. The villains were completely rotten and evil, and Superman's job was to save the world from them seven days a week--and keep Lois out of his pants. It was a simple life. But the superhero business, like everything else, isn't so easy anymore. Even Superman himself can today be seen sitting on rooftops holding his head in anguish, torn because he is a freak and an outsider, rejected by Lois because he is such a macho brute.
Previews: It's Good News for backward-looking Broadway this season. The revival of the 1927 DeSylva-Brown-Henderson rah-rah musical, now starring Alice Faye and John Payne, is scheduled to unpack its traveling trunk of old songs on November third (at the St. James). A new Gypsy, with everything presumably coming up roses for Angela Lansbury following a successful stint in London and around the U. S., will open September 23 (at the Winter Garden). The season's big new musical, Mack & Mabel, is about old movies; its title characters are silent-comedy-maker Mack Sennett and his star Mabel Normand. This David Merrick special, with score by Jerry Herman, book by Michael Stewart and direction by Gower Champion, is scheduled to open at the Majestic in October, starring Robert Preston, Bernadette Peters and Lisa Kirk. Bette Davis has promised to make her musical debut in Miss Moffat, a transposition of her 1945 movie The Corn Is Green from a Welsh coal-mining area to the American South. The book is by the original author, Emlyn Williams, and Joshua Logan, who will also direct. On tap is a black Wizard of Oz, to be titled The Wiz, as in "We're off to see The Wiz."
There have always been individual women in rock 'n' roll who can kick the brains out of the back of your head--Joplin did it all too briefly and Maggie Bell, among others, is doing it today. But there's never really been an all-women's group that could switch on the heavy-boogie light in your head--so we were happy to get a call from Josh Mills, who told us he'd found one. Josh does reviews for the New York Daily News, among others, and here's what he had to say:
Previews: Disaster looms on the movie horizon as a major theme, Hollywood's predictable response to such gilt-edged investments as The Poseidon Adventure and Airport, both whopping financial successes. Look for an inevitable sequel titled Beyond the Poseidon Adventure sometime next year (another ocean liner in distress, presumably), preceded this fall by Airport 1975, taking off with an all-star cast of nail biters led by Charlton Heston, Karen Black, George Kennedy, Susan Clark, Myrna Loy, Gloria Swanson and singer Helen Reddy.
Topless radio was fun ("Hello, is this Morgan? Am I on the air? Morgan, I have a, you know, lover who's a. you know, butcher, I mean, like, really . . ."). but the FCC started fining stations, and that was the end of that. Oral sex apparently is still verboten on the airwaves. So what's a medium to do? Television snatches away all the really good radio ideas and gives them to Lucille Ball or James Arness and they play with them for 18 or 25 years . . . wait a minute, did somebody say medium? That's it! Enter the latest radio fad: psychic call-in shows. Who knows what Social Security numbers lurk in the hearts of callers? The radio psychic knows, bwoooo-hoo-hoo-hoo-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha.
Having seen our share of old gangster movies, we know all about the people in the jukebox and pinball business: They're swarthy, mean-looking mobster types in snap-brim fedoras who persuade trembling cafe owners to install new entertainment machines to replace the ones they've just smashed with axes. So naturally our adrenaline was up when we went to the annual convention of the Music Operators of America at one of Chicago's fanciest hotels. The M.O.A. is the trade organization for the manufacturers of all sorts of entertainment equipment, from pool tables to electronic dart boards, but especially jukes and pinballs, and to call themselves something as innocent-sounding as Music Operators of America didn't fool us a bit.
The other night, my girlfriend of five years accused me of lack of interest. She asked me why I no longer talk to her and said she fears that the romance has gone out of our relationship. I replied that I express my love for her in bed, sexually. The rest of the night was spent in silence, both sexually and verbally. How do we get out of this impasse?--K. L., Detroit, Michigan.
we got out of vietnam, right? so the cops are using sensors that were field-tested on the ho chi minh trail and surveillance devices they can plant in your brain, now, if they could just call an air strike at park and 56th ...
It was heavenly!" sighed the coed to her roommate about the results of her date with the school's star distance runner. "He lapped me at the halfway point but still had plenty of kick left, and we finished in a dead heat!"
For some time, researchers have been amassing evidence that plants can think, feel and communicate with man. Recent books and magazine articles have suggested that trees, shrubs and flowers are capable of such feats as counting, responding to music or prayer, remembering, registering alarm or distress or hope or happiness and even reading minds. What most people don't know, however, is that some plants can pick their nose, eat with a fork, ride sidesaddle, yodel and even play a crude form of association football.
Before The Turn of the century, before frozen orange juice and presliced bread, practically all Scotch was straight malt whisky. It was a handmade product--malted barley, slowly distilled in primitive pot stills to a rich, smoky resonance. Highlanders relished their "loud" whisky because it "went down singing hymns." Today's Scotch, however, is literally something else; a light, dry, muted spirit--obviously not the meaty mouthful of poem and legend. Nor is it a straight whisky. It is, in fact, a blend consisting of straight malt--the original usquebaugh--and grain whisky, another potation made in Scotland. Grain whisky is distilled at high proof, in modern column stills, primarily from corn and some barley, its virtue being that it is rather neutral--silent. When mixed with the loud malts, grains temper the frank, generous flavor and dilute the body, creating a lightness esteemed by consumers in 200 countries.
Step right up, folks, no shoving, Please go 'Way, Girl, You Bother me. For not one thin additional tenth of a dollar, We give you the greatest extravaganza of male flesh ever assembled under a single big top. Can you find the 17 guys you always wanted to be? Can you find the 17 guys they always wanted to be? Could we have eldridge cleaver without John Wayne? Brando without bogart and huck Finn? Dylan without holden caulfield? But who invited Judy Garland? see Page 210.
One evening in Paris in 1879, The Stomach Club, a society of American writers and artists, gathered to drink well, to eat a good dinner and to hear an address by Mark Twain. He was among friends and, according to the custom of the club, he delivered a humorous talk on a subject hardly ever mentioned in public in that day and age. After the meeting, he preserved the manuscript among his papers. It was finally printed in a pamphlet limited to 50 copies 64 years later.
I Suppose it was inevitable that I would become a househusband. For one thing, I try to make a living writing and I work at home, and my wife works in an office and on a Ph.D., and it occurred to me early on that if we were going to eat at night, I'd have to do a lot of the cooking. Also, I am a sucker for downtrodden majorities, and women really have been mistreated. So while she's off at her anatomy lab, cutting up cadavers, I'm in the kitchen, chopping up chicken. And I like it. It even makes me feel fulfilled, sometimes.
Now, this is where we get into real trouble. There is no sure-fire way to pin down the differences between men and women, but a lot of serious scientists have been trying to do so for a long time. So we're just going to list some of their claims. You don't have to believe them. Just remember that somewhere there is a real scientist who did his time, published his research and is ready to stand behind the difference he thinks he proved. • So first of all, women are softer. • When a man stands naked, his genitals show. • Women can conceive in spite of being uncooperative, repelled or even unconscious. • Women can feed babies with their bodies. • Men can run longer and faster than women (due to pelvic structure). • Women outnumber and live longer than men. • Male infants are much more susceptible to infections. • Women are infertile after menopause, while men remain fertile indefinitely. • Puberty starts around the age of 13 for boys, 11 for girls. • Women reach peak orgasmic capacity in their late 20s or early 30s. The peak for men comes three or four years after adolescence begins. • Female capacity for having orgasms appears to be greater. • Male sexual function depends more on learning (and can be mislearned). Necrophilia, for example, is exclusively a male problem. • There are more nerve endings in the clitoris than in the penis. • Studies of British women show they had more traffic accidents during menstruation than at other times. • Other studies show that during menstruation occur 49 percent of all crimes by female prisoners, 45 percent of all punishments of schoolgirls, 53 percent of suicides, 46 percent of admissions to mental hospitals. Scores on exams were lowered by 13 percent and 60 percent of women's traffic accidents occurred during the premenstrual-menstrual phase. • Hormonal differences are reflected in differences in voice timbre, muscle strength and aggressiveness (most researchers find male more aggressive). • Men appear to be more combative (some say because they are biologically expendable). • Men wreck more cars than do women (even taking into account that men own more cars than do women). • Girls develop verbal skills earlier and are more fluent throughout life. • Female sense of smell is more acute. • Newborn boys raise their heads higher than girls do. • Male development relies more on environment (male infants who are handled more by their mothers are more active. Girls develop independently of this). • Girls do better in rote memory testing and work better with symbols and artificial languages. • Boys get lower grades in high school. • Men perceive spatial relationships better (a good illustration of this is the high-run scores for last year's U. S. Open Pocket Billiard Championships: women--35; men--137). • Boys win more at ticktacktoe. • Boys are slightly better than girls at solving mazes. • Psychological tests and surveys indicate that girls are more concerned with companionship, more docile and strive harder to please others. • A survey of career women suggests that encouragement and praise elicit more effort from them than the promise of promotion. • The overriding preoccupation of women is marriage. • Men most often work for status (prestige, fame, glory) and no matter what level they achieve, they are less satisfied with it than women in the same position. • Drive, persistence, self-motivation and the tendency to be encouraged by difficulty and competition were found to be greater in men. • All mammalian embryos start out as females. Nature's predisposition is to produce females. If androgen is not present during a critically short period in utero, a female will always develop. • Being male is biologically more difficult, complex and unstable than being female. • Women have four to five percent greater chromosomal mass, due to the presence of two X chromosomes. • The more "masculine" (hormonally) a man is, the more likely that his hair will fall out. Recently one writer has noted that since American women have involved themselves in what some think of as male roles, their hair has thinned dramatically. • Men used to be the prime target for ulcers and alcoholism. Now the number of female victims is increasing rapidly. • There are, however, numerous diseases to which men are more vulnerable. The only diseases to which women are more vulnerable than men are the autoimmune diseases and perhaps endocrine disorders. • Gynecologists say that "female complaints" have become less frequent. • The most striking difference, however, appears to have been proved beyond the shadow of a doubt by our own research team. Its finding: A man can piss across a room.